1 THE INDIAN SOAP INDUSTRY: The origins of personal cleanliness date back to prehistoric times. Since water is essential or life ,the earliest people lived near water and knew something about its cleansing properties - at least that it rinsed mud off their hands. A soap-like material found in clay cylinders during the excavation of ancient Babylon is evidence that soap making was known as early as 2800BC.Inscriptions on the cylinders say that fats were boiled with ashes, which is a method of making soap, but do not ref er to the purpose of the "soap."Such materials were later used as hair styling aids. Soap got its name, according to an ancient Roman legend, from Mount Sapo, where animals were sacrificed. Rain washed a mixture of melted animal fat, and wood ashes down into the clay soil along the Tiber River .Women found that this clay mixture made their wash cleaner with much less effort. 2 THE INDUSTRY ANALYSIS: The toilet soaps market is estimated at 53 0,000Tpa including small imports. The market is littered over with several, Leading national and global brands and a large number of Small brands, which have limited markets. The popular and premium brands include life b u o y , LUX, cinthol, liril, rexona, and nirma.Toilet soaps, despite their divergent brands, are not well differentiated by the consumers. IT is, Therefore, Not clear if it is the brand loyalty or experimentation lured by high volume media campaign, which sustain them. Consequence is that the market is fragmented. IT is obvious that this must lead to a highly competitive market. Toilet soap, once only an urban phenomenon, Has now penetrated practically all areas including remote rural areas. The incremental demand flows from population increase and rise in usage norm impacted as it is by a greater concern for hygiene. Increased sales revenues would also expand from up gradation of quality or per unitvalue.AS the market is constituted now; It can be divided into four price segments: premium, Popular, Discount and economy soaps. Premium soaps are estimated to have a market volume of About 80,000 Tonnes. This translates into a share of About 14 to15%.soaps Form the largest pie of The Fmcg market with bathing & toilet soaps accounting for around 30% of the soap market, By value. Currently, the soap industry is divided into three segments namely premium, popular and economy/sub popular. To fight competition, Major players Hindustan Unilever ltd (hul), 3 Godrej Consumer Products ltd (gcpl) and Wipro Consumer care & lighting are now drawing up fresh game plans. And the accent is clearly on innovation to gain mind share as well as market share in this overcrowded category. 4 HINDUSTAN UNILIVER: With over seven brands LUX, LIFEBUOY, HAMAM, REXONA, BREEZE, DOVE and PEARS has 54.3%share of the overall soap market. HUL is India's largest Fast Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG) Company; its journey began 75 years ago, in1933,when the company was first incorporated. The company stirring the lives of two out of three Indians with over 20distinct categories in Home &Personal Care Products and Foods & Beverages 5 and also one of the country's largest exporters. HUL's brands includes Lifebuoy, Lux, Surf Excel, Rin, Wheel, Fair & Lovely, Pond's, Sunsilk, Clinic, Pepsodent, Close-up, Lakme, Brooke Bond, Kissan, Knorr-Annapurna, Kwality Wall's are household names across the country. They are manufactured in over 40 Factories across India. In the Rs 7000 crore by sales soap market, HUL¶s market share has dropped to 54.3%inMarch 2008 from 55.9% in March 2006. ABOUT LIFEBUOY: The desire to be clean, active and healthy is intrinsic to every one ± irrespective of age or economic status. Lifebuoy understands this need and champions the cause for hygiene and health around the world. An inspiring vision for more hygienic, healthier and ultimately more vital communities is the driving force behind the Lifebuoy brand. To realise this vision, Lifebuoy has looked to consistently innovate and provide accessible hygiene and health products to a wide variety of consumers. This vision also commits the Lifebuoy brand team to visible action, inspiring projects that motivate consumers to improve their hygiene behaviour. 6 The lifebuoy brand¶s social mission is to bring safety, security and health to five billion people through the active promotion of hand washing with soap. And while our products already provide millions of people with accessible and affordable hygiene, as the world¶s leading health soap, we know there is more the brand can do. Through the Lifebuoy brand¶s social mission programmes we aim to make a difference in people¶s day-to-day lives ± spreading positive hygiene messages through hygiene promotion activities. The projects instigated by our country teams are already making a difference and helping to save lives. The resources we provide to complement those supplied by the public sector are vital to ensure that we continue reaching people who need our help the most. Our commitment to the Lifebuoy social mission is evident in the steps we have taken towards making hand washing with soap central to the brand¶s marketing efforts. This report gives an overview of the work Lifebuoy has done in 2008 and 2009, partnering Lifebuoy together with public and private sector partners around the world, who share the brand¶s commitment to promoting health and hygiene. Without these important partnerships it would not be possible to share our messages on such a large scale. Before joining the Lifebuoy team, I worked for nongovernmental organisations and in the public sector, and have lived in more than 20 countries around the world. I sought a platform from which I could make a real impact to people¶s lives. I believe that Lifebuoy and Unilever as 7 a corporation offers this platform, with clear, tangible deliverables that are relevant both for business and social benefits. Visiting some of the Lifebuoy brand¶s social mission programmes in India, Indonesia and Vietnam has made me realise that we have already achieved so much, thanks to the right support and gives me the confidence that we can achieve a lot more. The commitment of our Lifebuoy teams across the world is exceptional and unique. 8 9 KEY FACTS --Today Lifebuoy is mainly sold in Asia and parts of Africa. It is a market leader in every Asian market where it is sold --Lifebuoy soap has been proven in laboratories to provide 100% more effective germ protection than ordinary soaps --To date, millions of people in rural and urban Pakistan have experienced the pioneering, Lifebuoy sponsored Health Education programme the single largest private hygiene education programme in the world --In 2005, Lifebuoy was awarded a 'Citizen Brand' accolade in Indonesia in recognition of the work the brand has undertaken in hand wash education. 10 Nearly half of the Lifebuoy brand's consumption is in rural Asia, where most of the population live on less than US$1 per day COMPANY ORIENTATION Company orientation towards the market place means the arena in which the company focuses .there is various concepts which company may follow to reach out to customers. --Production concept: Lifebuoy uses production concept where it tri es to m a k e its product available in all the parts of t h e c o u n t r y . I t h a s i t ¶ s avail abilit y in 50000 vill ages in India and the part of L i f e b u o y s o a p s affordable and lowest among all its compotators. --Product concept : Lifebuoy also uses product concept where it has i n t r o d u c e d i t ¶ s s e v e r a l products such as Lifebuoy acti ve red , L i f e b u o y active orange , Lifebuoy plus. It has also launched new products under the brand Lifebuoy such as talcum powder, Shower gel. --Marketing management concept: the four pillars of marketing concept are Target market; customer needs integrated marketing, profit ability. Lifebuoy 11 targets the rural; market, where the customer¶s needs are goods at lower cost, lifebuoy considers that and markets its products considering the needs of the target market. --Societal concept: Lifebuoy SWASTHY CHETANA is a single largest rural health a hygiene educational programme ever undertaken in India. Its major objective is to educate people about hygiene. Lifebuoy became first Indian brand to have a special postal cover which was released on the occasion of World Health Day for the phenomenal work done by Lifebuoy PRODUCT LEVELS --Core product: Core benefit that a customer expects from Lifebuoy products to keep them clean after using a Lifebuoy product. --Basic product: Basic products that Lifebuoy provides are Lifebuoy range of soaps, talcum powder, Lifebuoy hand wash, Lifebuoy shower gel, etc. --Expec ted p roduct: Custom er bu yi ng L i f e b u o y p r o d u c t e x p e c t s t h a t t h e products they use must be skin friendly and not in any form harm them and the environment. 12 --Augmented product: A Lifebuoy user n e v e r e x p e c t e d f r a g r a n c e i n t h e Lifebuoy product he used but now there is various fragrances available to face prevailing competition. CLASSIFICATION OF PRODUCTS --Based on tangibility: all lifebuoy produc ts a r e t a n g i b l e p r o d u c t s since all can be used by their customers for physical wellbeing. --Based on functional life: All Lifebuoy products are consumer products since they are used by the customers on daily basis. --Based on Pri ce and Quality: All Lifebuoy p r o d u c t a s a r e m a s s p r o d u c t s since they can be used by one and all they are not only meant for all users, it does not have any barriers that they can be used only by certain age group or any particular class. --Based on Utility: all Lifebuoy products are consumer products since they are immediately consumed once bought. --Convenience goods: All the products of Lifebuoy provide convince to customers. 13 SWOT Analysis of Lifebuoy: Strengths: 1. First soap to use carbolic acid, which gave it a red colour and strong, medicinal scent 2. Wide portfolio for the Lifebuoy brand ranging which includes Soap, Hand Sanitizer and Hand Wash 3. High consumer awareness for the brand of Lifebuoy 4. Most popular soap brand especially in the rural market 5. Excellent brand visibility and extensive distribution Weakness: 1.Lower market penetration in urban areas as compared to rural areas 2.Initially positioned as a masculine soap, which was eventually turned as a family soap. 3. Not been perceived as a beauty soap, and is mainly used just for hand washing 14 Opportunity: 1. The Lifebuoy µSwasthya Chetana programme¶ uses aµdirect consumer contact¶ methodology, and touches the lives of 70 million people in 18,000villages 2. Imparting education about importance of hand washing to prevent spread of germs 3. Used global epidemics like swine flu to further promote products for better hygiene and protection. Threats: 1.Competitor brands offering similar levels of protection 2.Considered to be a low-end product, and may find it difficult to move up in the segment. 15 SWOT ANALYSIS OF HUL: STRENGTHS  Strong brand portfolio, price, quantity & variety.  Innovative Aspects.  Presence of Established distribution networks in both urban and rural areas. 3400Distributers 16 million outlets over the world. 700 million customer base.  Strong R & D of the company.  Highly skilled human resource.  Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR). 16 WEAKNESSES  Strong Competitors.  Low exports level (at present).  Changing consumption pattern.  High advertising costs. OPPORTUNITIES  Large domestic market - over a billion population.  Untapped rural market.  Changing Lifestyles & Rising income levels, i.e. increasing per capital income of consumers. THREATS  Tax and regulatory structure.  Mimic of brands  Entry of ITC in FMCG sector.  Increasing cost of raw materials. 17 BRAND HISTORY The HLL spokesman sums it all up in his words, ³Lifebuoy is India¶s oldest personal wash brand. It has been around since 1895. It has always stood for health and hygiene, delivered through germ protection. The ruby red colour Soap, with its distinct odour, has carried the Lifebuoy message of health across the length and breadth of the country, making it the largest selling soap brand, not only in India, but anywhere in the world. The name µLifebuoy¶ is supposed to convey the promise of a healthy family, and not just an individual 18 Brand Positioning and Brand Building Originally, Lifebuoy was a down market brand, but in recent times, HLL has made efforts to Position it as more of an upscale product. HLL has positioned Lifebuoy as a pan-Indian brand, targeted at every Indian family, Urban or rural, rich or poor. It aims at bringing a live Lifebuoy¶s Promise of family health in an enjoyable and compelling manner. Chimes the HLL spokesman enthusiastically, ³We strive to Build the Lifebuoy brand through mass media advertising, direct Consumer contact, and trade activation.´ 19 HLL repositioned the Lifebuoy brand in 2002, in an attempt to Make it more relevant to both new and existing customers. After this revamp, Lifebuoy is no longer just a carbolic soap with Cresylic perfume. It is now being positioned as toilet soap. The new Formulation, launched in 2002 , contains Active-B, which protects users against germ infections. The current Lifebuoy formulation offers a superior bathing experience. Lifebuoy has also re-established its message of health for consumers , from the µtraditional, male , victorious concept of health ¶ to a more responsible concept of µhealth for the entire family . ¶ Thus a stereotype that glorifies good health for the head of the family (a male) , and possibly the other µworking members¶ of the family(Again, invariably males), has been done away with, indeed replaced by a more democratic concept of a healthy family. The Brand Derby has rated Lifebuoy as one of the most successful brand re-launches of all time. As the HLL spokesman points out, ³After the re-launch, Lifebuoy¶s market share in the bath soaps sector rose from 12% to 18%.´ In 2003, HLL took a major pricing initiative , by making Lifebuoy available at the bargain basement price of 2 rupees at the retail level. This pricing strategy is targeted 20 at the rural market, where buyers are extremely pricesensitive. In 2004, Lifebuoy saw another re-launch, whereby it was given a new curved shape, a change from the more than 100-year-old brick shape. The µhealth soap¶ now had µan easy grip¶ and a modern look. HLL demonstrated, with the aid of laboratory tests, that the new Lifebuoy was twice as good as other soaps in terms of providing germ protection. Lifebuoy now provided protection from germs that cause body odour, acne and infections in cuts and bruises. HLL currently provides Lifebuoy consumers with four choices - Lifebuoy Strong, Lifebuoy Fresh, Lifebuoy Gold and Lifebuoy Naturals ± all different variants of Lifebuoy. All these variants are available in the new curved shape and have the new formulation. EVOLUTION AND CHANGES: Lifebuoy went through several changes and incarnations throughout the brand¶s history. A white version of the soap was introduced in 1962 and contained a light perfume scent. Pink and aqua version was released soon after. Each package of lifebuoy contained the phrase ³knock out B.O.´ and the brand is credited with coining the long ± standing abbreviation for body odour. The original /lifebuoy soap was manufactured in the UK until 1987 when the production and distribution was halted.. the brand was shortly taken over by Uniliver and 21 is still in the production today²albeit with several key differences. Due to regulations put forth by European Union, the soap can no longer contain carbolic because it is potentially toxic and linked to skin irritation and respiratory tract problems with prolonged exposure. The substance is also considered a possible carcinogen. Lifebuoy is still the leading brand of soap in several countries worldwide, specifically in India and in parts of Southern Asia. Uniliver produces a wide range of products under the Lifebuoy umbrella such as body wash, liquid soaps and acne-fighting solutions. Lifebuoy¶s goal is to provide affordable and accessible hygiene and health solutions that enable people to lead a life without fear of hygiene anxieties and health consequences. 22 MARKETING STRATEGIES Lifebuoy has always been marketed as µa tough cleaning soap for a tough man.¶ (Of course, the 2002 relaunch targeted Lifebuoy as a soap that brought good health to the entire family) .Lifebuoy has been seen as a value-for-money product, a soap that is long-lasting. In a very smart TV ad campaign, children are shown cleaning a street. The message put across is that since these children are secure from ailments that are caused by a lack of proper sanitation and hygiene, thanks to the fact that they use Lifebuoy, they are in a position to ensure cleanliness and hygiene for the entire community. Thus, Lifebuoy not only ensures good health 23 and cleanliness for individuals, but healthy and productive communities as well. The µLifebuoy Swasthya Chetana¶ programme uses a µdirect consumer contact¶ methodology, and touches the lives of 70 million people in 18,000 villages. A unique feature of this campaign is that it utilises multiple contacts, as opposed to other programmes which are µsingle contact¶ in nature. Gushes the HLL spokesman, ³This programme aims to educate people about the benefits of hand-wash with soap, and how hand-wash can help kill invisible ,disease causing germs. It is thus a marketing programme with a strong social cause of improving the health and hygiene of rural India. The brand USP is, µLifebuoy provides 100% better protection from germs as compared to ordinary soaps.¶ Growth of the Brand in the face of Competition In the mid to late 1990s, Lifebuoy was reeling under the onslaught of the µdiscount¶ soaps, which were luring consumers by offering soaps with modern forms and good sensorial experience at affordable prices. Consumers saw Lifebuoy as an outdated offering vis-àvis discount soaps. The two re-launches in 2002 and 2004 enabled Lifebuoy to reverse this trend and µreinvent¶ itself. 24 Adds the HLL spokesman, ³The two re-launches have dramatically altered the fortunes of the brand, which is on a high growth trajectory today. We have come a long way from a ruby red carbolic soap to a range of contemporary offerings. Our vision statement is: µMake a billion Indians feel safe and secure by meeting their health and hygiene needs.¶ MARKET SEGMENTATION TARGET MARKET Mass marketing Lifebuoy products vision is to provide a healthy living to one and all. So their target is not only a section of people but a mass be it rural areas or urban areas. Their productssuch as lifebuoy total, lifebuoy active, lifebuoy hand wash etc are targeted to the entire mass. Segment market Lifebuoy divided the market i nto segments to cater the needs of different people i n different segments. For example they have lifebuoy active green for those who want germfree protection through herbs and not chemicals. Then they have lifebuoy shower gel targeted to people who want style and not just soap. For teenagers they have lifebuoy skin care, deo fresh etc. 25 BASIS OF MARKET SEGMENTATION GEOGRAPHIC SEGMENTATION Rural: 75% of India's population is in the rural areas; hence about 50% of the soaps are sold in the rural markets. Lifebuoy¶s variants like Lifebuoy plus, Lifebuoy total, lifebuoy active are specially positioned for the rural market. Semi-urban: For the semi -urban segment, Lif ebuoy nature & Lif ebuoy fresh, lifebuoy talcum is positioned. 26 Urban: Whereas Lif ebuoy cl ear skin soap, Lif ebuoy deo fresh, Lifebuoy i nternational ( p l u s & gold), lifebuoy shower gel are meant for the urban segment. DEMOGRAPHIC SEGMENTATION Age They have different soaps positioned for different age groups for eg they have lifebuoycare men and children. They have lifebuoy skin clear for the teenagers, lifebuoy total for mothers, lifebuoy deo fresh for young adults etc Gender They had earlier focused their brand only on men. But when they realized that women h a v e a more command on the purchase of soaps, t h e y r e p o s i t i o n e d t h e i r b r a n d b y including products for women and the family as a whole. They have lifebuoy skin clear. Gold care for women and lifebuoy total, lifebuoy care for men. Income The income factor plays a major role in buying decision of the consumer. Now they know t h a t i n r u r a l areas peopl e wi l l not pr ef er shower gel s 27 a n d h a n d w a s h e s b e c a u s e t h e i r purchasing power permits them to satisfy only their basic need of having a bath. So soap prices are the least among their range of products which are really affordable. Whereas a person from urban or semi urban area will have the purchasing power to buy shower gels and hand washes. So they give them the satisfaction of their basic necessity with fewmore additions. The prices of shower gels and hand washes will be a little more than the soaps but now too higher. In any case the main motive of lifebuoy is to give a better hygienic life to the mass BEHAVIOURAL SEGMENTATION Benefit sought Benefits sought by people from different products are different. Lifebuoy active green makes use of herbal products so its an eco friendly soap. Lifebuoy skin care helps in preventing pimples and protects skin User rate Lifebuoy soaps like lifebuoy care, lifebuoy total, and lifebuoy herbal are used more among the people whereas lifebuoy hand wash, lifebuoy shower gel are used at a lower rate. 28 4 P¶s of marketing of Lifebuoy PRODUCT POSITIONING it is the single largest soap brand³with 20 lac soaps sold every day and an estimated value of Rs 500 crore (600 million users annually The relaunch of the 107-year-old Lifebuoy has been done in a bid to drive growth in a sluggish soap market. HLL challenged everything that Lifebuoy stood for perfume, formulation, size and shape. extending it to talcum powder and also testing a herbal variant of this power brand. LIFEBUOY PORTFOLIO: Today, the Lifebuoy brand is more than the quintessential bar of red soap, and provides hygiene and health for the entire family through a range of products like liquid hand wash and specially designed body wash. Beyond ensuring daily hygiene and freshness, Lifebuoy products also address special needs like anti-acne and skin fortification for an all around cleansing experience. Hand Sanitizer Lifebuoy Hand Sanitizer effectively disrupts bacteria¶s cell membrane & virus¶s outer coat thereby kills germs & viruses on your hands. Proven to kill H1N1 virus Dries quickly, is non-sticky and has soothing fragrance. Has 29 Moisturizer and Vitamin-E to keep your hands soft and smooth. Bar Soap Lifebuoy bar soaps support children¶s health and growth by providing extended germ protection for up to 12 hours after a bath thanks to enhanced ingredients. Lifebuoy Body Wash provides deep cleansing of pores, protecting against the three root causes of skin health problems ± clogged pores, overdrying, and infection- causing germs. 30 Hand Soap Clean, germ-free hands are the key to good health, as ingestion of germs from unhygienic hands at mealtimes is the most likely cause for diseases. Lifebuoy Hand Soaps offer hospital-strength germ protection, with a unique formulation that generates a rich lather. This provides an effective and hygienic wash in every corner of the hands and nails, at the same time leaving your hands pleasantly fragrant. Lifebuoy Men's Body wash Male skin is more oily and sweaty, making it more prone to attacks from germs that cause skin problems and body odour. Lifebuoy Men's Body Washes are specially formulated to wash away excess oil and sweat, protecting against body odour and other problems caused by germs. Two variants provide the most important benefits to men¶s skin Clear Skin Lifebuoy Clear Skin provides specialist protection from acne, which results fromoil and dirt coming together. Mineral clay or "multani mitti" absorbs the oil fromyour skin, while washing away germs and dirt to greatly reduce the incidence of acne. In fact, Lifebuoy Clear Skin has been shown to reduce acne up to70 per centin six weeks, guaranteeing visibly clearer skin 31 Did you know? Lifebuoy has always played a role in times of crisis, helping to prevent the spread of germs and disease. In 2004, Lifebuoy distributed 4 million soap bars Pakistan wide. Same year, Lifebuoy Partnered with Save the Children, an NGO of the Bill Gates Foundation and educated young mothers about health and hygiene, in the rural areas of Pakistan. In 2005, over 200 000 bars of Lifebuoy soap were donated to UNICEF and the International Committee of the Red Cross to support their earthquake relief operations in Northern India and Pakistan. Lifebuoy have also Partnered with UNICEF by training teams and sending them to the earthquake hit areas for relief and health education. THE WAY FORWARD --For the past few years, major changes have been made to the classic Lifebuoy soap bar to ensure that it provides improved hygiene protection and a more enjoyable healthy washing experience for its billions of consumers. --Lifebuoy soap's classic hard red brick shape has been replaced with a new signature Lifebuoy shape. The new shape makes the bar easier to grip and use 32 --The Lifebuoy Brand team have developed a new formulation providing even better germ protection which creates a rich lather on the skin. --Lifebuoy soap's characteristic medicated, carbolic smell has been replaced with a moreenjoyable and contemporary 'health' fragrance --Lifebuoy is now toilet soap with 2 more variants offering specific multiple benefits --White offers moisturizing and a distinct fragrance --Green is anti-acne (neem and lemon) Lifebuoy has become more than just a bar of soap today the brand provides hygiene and health solutions for families. LINE EXTENSIONS ² ADVANTAGES & EXAMPLES When HLL introduced Lifebuoy in the Indian market in 1895(more than 100 years ago!), it was positioned as the soap that would destroy germs and keep the body healthy. The brand found the going tough, especially in rural markets where most people were accustomed to bathing without any soap. HLL then decided to project Lifebuoy as soap for hand wash. The approach seemed to pay off. By 1900, Lifebuoy had established itself as soap for hand wash. 33 At this stage, the brands inherent properties were expanded and Lifebuoy was repositioned as bath soap. Health remained the benefit proposition. â¼×Where there is Lifebuoy, there is health became a very popular jingle in rural India. The brand was also projected on the plank of economy. Much later, in 1964, the brand was re-launched with a slight change in its shape and wrapper design. The relaunch was also backed by promotion campaigns highlighting the health benefit. Lifebuoy started associating with sports events, seeking the image of a champions soap and the health and body fitness campaign got reinforced at this stage. By the 1970s, competitors entered challenging Lifebuoys supremacy. The benefit-propositions in soaps were also changing from healthcare to aspects such as freshness, beauty, nature-care and deodorant-quality. HLL now had many requirements to meet; it had to tap some of these emerging market needs, it had to play down the image of Lifebuoy as a mere villagers soap and it had to enhance the earnings from the Lifebuoy brand in the long term. HLL decided to meet these needs by enlarging the scope of the Lifebuoy brand through line extensions. Lifebuoy personal: HLL now launched Lifebuoy Personal, in pink color, with a new perfume. But the brand suffered because it did not carry the benefit proposition of health and body care. 34 HLL subsequently mended these drawbacks through an appropriate promotion campaign. Lifebuoy Plus: In the 1980s, HLL made special attempts to expand the reach of Lifebuoy to urban consumers. To quote HLL, Lifebuoy was considered down market especially in the urban areas. So, we had to instill a sense of pride in the user; he should not be ashamed of using Lifebuoy. So Lifebuoy Plus came; it basically was the old Lifebuoy with a different perfume. Backed by high budget advertisement, HLL managed to popularize Lifebuoy Plus. Says HLL,With Lifebuoy Plus we could widen the appeal to new, urban consumers. Lifebuoy Gold: One more extension appeared for the urban consumers, Lifebuoy Gold; it broke away from all traditional red color of lifebuoy; it was pure white, had different fragrance and was higher priced. Liquid Lifebuoy: By this time, Liquid Lifebuoy also staged its entry to strengthen the brands presence in the urban market. It was a modern product form. In the rural markets, Lifebuoy continued its dominance in spite of competition; there was the stubborn Lifebuoy user in the rural areas, who continued to patronize the brand. The line extensions² Lifebuoy Personal, Life buoy Plus, and the campaigns around them helped strengthen the brand name Lifebuoy to a great extent. 35 Lifebuoy Active: But by the late 1990s, Lifebuoy was again under pressure. To quote HLL: Lifebuoy has been facing pressure; carbolic soaps are being challenged by cheap fatty- matter based soaps. We are taking a series of measures to counter it. HLL then came out another extension, Lifebuoy Active, to take on the challenge posed by non-carbolic soaps. While Lifebuoy continues its fight into the next century of its growth, HLL is endeavouring to keep Lifebuoy young and novel. The parent brand and the extensions together enhance the competitiveness of HLLs soaps line. Lifebuoy remains the largest selling soap brand in India and a big revenue/profit earner for HLL. POSITIONING STRATEGY Lifebuoy's goal is to provide affordable and accessible hygiene and health solutions that enable people to lead a life without fear of hygiene anxieties and health consequences. The brand was initially positioned in the health and value platform. It was positioned by the jingle " thandurusti ki raksha kartha hai lifebuoy, lifebuoy hai jahan thandurusti hai vahan." Lifebuoy was previously targeted at the male user with an individualoriented ³success through health´ positioning. During its entry into the soaps market it was alsopositioned as having low prices. The new Lifebuoy is targeted at today¶s discerning 36 house wif e wi th a m ore i ncl usi v e ³f ami l y health protection for my family and me ³positioning. Its variants - Lifebuoy Total is positioned for all those mothers with active kids who constantly fear hygiene threats from germs leading to stress and anxiety for the mothers. Lifebuoy Deo Fresh is positioned especially for young adults who lead active lifestyles. Lifebuoy active green, on the other hand, which comes with neem and tulsi, is positioned as a herbal soap. Lifebuoy Gold Care is specifically designed for sensitive skin. Lifebuoy clear skin, as the name suggests, is positioned for pimple free skin. PROMOTION TV and print campaigns, focused attention on the family health themes. Conducted consumer education exercise using "Germ tests´. Explored the communication options during World Health Day. Created The Lifebuoy Swashthya Chetana HLL was also offering cross company product mixes 37 HLL used Mahakumbh melaas an opportunity to change hand-washing and bathing habits in rural India. Cinema van operations PROMOTIONAL STRATEGIES: Successful promotion campaigns don't happen by chance. To realize goals, promotional products programs must be carefully planned, taking into consideration the audience, budget and, of course, the ultimate result to be gained. 1. Define a specific objective. 2. Determine a workable distribution plan to a targeted audience. 3. Create a central theme. 4. Develop a message to support the theme. 5. Select a promotional product that bears a natural relationship to your profession or communicationstheme. 38 6. Don't pick an item based solely on uniqueness, price or perceived value. Don¶t fall prey to the latest trends or fads. The most effective promotional products are used in a cohesive, well-planned campaign. Sales promotions are non-personal promotional efforts that are designed to have an immediate impact on sales. Media and non-media marketing communications are employed for a pre-determined limited time to increase consumer demand, stimulate market demand or improve product availability. Lifebuoy is promoting its product using these kinds of promotional techniques Consumer sales promotion techniques: The different consumer sales promotion techniques used by Lifebuoy are Price deal: A temporary reduction in the price, such as happy hour. Cents-off deal: Offers a brand at a lower price. Price reduction may be a percentage marked on the package. Price-pack deal: The packaging offers a consumer a certain percentage more of the product for the same price. Coupons: coupons have become a standard mechanism for sales promotions. Free-standing insert (FSI): A coupon booklet is inserted into the local newspaper for delivery. Rebates: Consumers are offered money back if the receipt and barcode are mailed to the producer. Contests/sweepstakes/games: The consumer is automatically entered into the event by purchasing the product. 39 BRAND POSITIONING FOR THE FUTURE For the future, HLL intends to position Lifebuoy as µa family health offering through germ protection.¶ ³We will strive to make our promise enjoyable and compelling, to build authority and affinity for the brand,´ states the HLL spokesman proudly. Advertising media-mix In addition to its TV campaign, HLL also uses other methods and media, such as direct consumer contact, 40 radio, statics, and point-of-sale, in order to reach consumers who do not have access to a television set . The Lifebuoy account is currently being handled by the ad agency Lowe. In the Lifebuoy ad by Lowe, a schoolgoing kid is shown, who, on a holiday, decides to clean up the garbage-strewn streets of his neighbourhood. He wakes up from bed, wears his spectacles, fetches a broom, and ties a piece of cloth around his forehead. He then starts cleaning the streets, dump ing the garbage into a cardboard box . He sets an example, as other children in the neighbourhood soon join him. A lady in the neighbourhood expresses her concern for the well being and hygiene of the children, and another lady, a confident mother, reassures her with the words, ³Koi Dar Nahi.´This concerted effort by the children transforms the d dirty neighbourhood into a spanking clean area. Now, to express their gratitude, all the parents give their children an open-air bath with««««««. .Yep, you guessed it right««.Lifebuoy. The line µKoi Dar Nahi¶ implies that a well-protected family has no reason to fear hygiene related illnesses or problems. Concludes the HLL spokesman, ³Even for the TVviewing consumer, in today¶s cluttered world, we do feel the need to bring our brand alive to consumers in multiple ways at multiple touch points, to remain visible.´ 41 In conclusion, Lifebuoy seems right on target to make a µclean¶ sweep of the Indian soap market! Brand Update: Lifebuoy has taken a vow to make India healthy. The new campaign "Banaye Healthy Hindustan". The new ad campaign takes the route of Before- After theme. The brand selected two apartment complex for this experiment. In one apartment, the children were asked to use Lifebuoy soaps 5 times a day and another apartment were selected where there was no change in the lifestyle . After the experiment, children in the apartment where the brand was used recorded remarkable increase in terms of school attendance and a decrease in the incidence of diseases. Lifebuoy is claiming that the experiment proves that using the brand 5 times a day can dramatically reduce the chance of getting illness and improve school attendance by 40%. The current campaign is an extension of the famous Swastya Chetana initiative of the brand where the children are encouraged to wash their hands with soaps in order to reduce the incidence of diseases like diarrhoea. This time Lifebuoy is using the before-after theme . 42 Indian brands are right now using the high-risk beforeafter theme. Horlicks was the one which came to my mind which had successfully used this experiment format to catch the consumer. The strategy is risky because the claims has to be authentic otherwise the brand will be in trouble. Secondly these claims should be believable. HUL has tried a similar campaign for Pepsodent (Dishum Dishum campaign) where it encouraged kids to brush their teeth twice a day. The campaign was a highly successful one. Through the new campaign, Lifebuoy is expecting similar success. It is commendable for a brand to strive hard for a noble cause. The brand has chosen a right cause which mutually helps both the brand and the community. 43 PRICE Hindustan Lever Ltd (HLL) currently on a price discount includes 150 gm Lifebuoy Gold (Rs 3 off ) HLL is also expected to follow suit with its Surf sachets HLL have deliberately introduced small pack sizes. Lifebuoy, HLL's largest selling soap brand, recently introduced a Rs2 SKU (stock keeping unit) of 18 gm targeted at the rural market in the Bimaru States PRICING STRATEGIES: MARKET PENETRATION Market penetration is the name given to a growth strategy where the business focuses on selling existing products into existing markets. Market penetration seeks to achieve four main objectives: Maintain or increase the market share of current products, this can be achieved by a combination of competitive pricing strategies ,advertising, sales promotion and perhaps more resources dedicated to personal selling. Secure dominance of growth markets. 44 Restructure a mature market by driving out competitors; this would require a much more aggressive promotional campaign, supported by a pricing strategydesigned to make the market unattractive for competitors. Increase usage by existing customers for example by introducing loyalty schemes Fast Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG) like lifebuoy shop has to be Some requirements for making an impression in the market for penetrating: 1) Strong distribution channel 2) Minimum profit margin 3) Simple marketing message 4) Lesser-priced packs to increase affordability. 5) Packaging in smaller units and localized design that attracts consumers. 6) Convenience of storage while use 7) Thorough knowledge of the village psyche In brief, the strategy revolves around what attracts consumers to a product. CONSUMER SALES PROMOTION TECHNIQUES: The different consumer sales promotion techniques used by Lifebuoy are: y Price deal: A temporary reduction in the price, such as happy hour. 45 y Cents-off deal: Offers a brand at a lower price. Price reduction may be a percentage marked on the package. y Price-pack deal: The packaging offers a consumer a certain percentage more of the product for the same price (for example,25 percent extra). y Coupons: coupons have become a standard mechanism for sales promotions. y Free-standing insert (FSI): A coupon booklet is inserted into the local newspaper for delivery. y Rebates: Consumers are offered money back if the receipt and barcode are mailed to the producer . y Contests/sweepstakes/games: The consumer is automatically entered into the event by purchasing the product. . 46 PLACE 70% of India's population resides in villages HLL has established a single distribution channel by consolidating categories HLL has mounted an initiative, Project Streamline, to further increase its rural reach with the help of rural substockiest. 47 DISTRIBUTION STRATEGIES: Movement of goods and services from the source through the distribution channel, right upto the final consumer, or user and the movement of payment in the opposite direction, rightup to the original producer or supplier. Chanel of Distribution: A distribution channel can be as short as being direct from the vendor to the consumer or may include several inter-connected (usually independent but mutually dependent) intermediaries such as wholesalers, distributors, agents, retailers. Each intermediary got the items at one pricing point and moves it to the next higher pricing point until it reaches the final buyer also called channel of distribution or marketing channel. IMPORTANCE OF DISTRIBUTION: Most producers use intermediaries to bring their products to market they try to develop a Distribution channel to do this. A distribution channel is a set of Interdependent organizations that help make a product available for use or consumption by the consumer or business user. Channel intermediaries are firms or individuals such as wholesalers, agents, brokers, or retailers who help move a product from the producer to the consumer or business user. A company¶s channel decisions directly affect every other marketing decision. Place decisions, f or example, affect pricing. Marketers that distribute products through mass 48 merchandisers such as Wal-Mart will have different pricing objectives and strategies than will those that sell to specialty stores. Distribution decisions can sometimes give a product a distinct position in the market. The choice of retailers and other intermediaries is strongly tied to the product itself. Manufacturer¶s select mass merchandisers to sell mid-price-range products while they distribute top-of -the-line products through high-end department and specialty stores. The firm¶s sales force and communications decisions depend on how much persuasion, training, motivation, and support its channel partners need. Whether a company develops or acquires certain new products may depend on how well that product¶s fit the capabilities of its channel members. Some companies pay too little attention to their distribution channels. Others, such as FedEx, Dell Computer, and Charles Schwab have used imaginative distribution systems to gain a competitive advantage. FUNCTIONS OF DISTRIBUTION CHANNEL: Distribution channels per form a number of functions that make possible the flow of goods from the producer to the customer . These functions must be handled by someone in the channel. Though the type of organization that per forms the different functions can vary from channel to channel, the functions themselves cannot be eliminated. Channels provide time, place, and ownership utility. They make products available when, where, and in the sizes and quantities that customers want. Distribution channels provide a number of logistics or physical distribution functions that increase the 49 efficiency of the flow of goods from producer to customer .Distribution channels create efficiencies by reducing the number of transactions necessary for goods to flow from many different manufacturers to large numbers of customers. This occurs in two ways. The first is called breaking bulk. Wholesalers and retailers purchase large quantities of goods from manufacturers but sell only one or a few at a time to many different customers. Second, channel intermediaries reduce the number of transactions by creating assortments providing a variety of products in one location so that customers can conveniently buy many different items from one seller at one time. The transportation and storage of goods is another type of physical distribution function. Retailers and other channel members move the goods from the production site to other locations where they are held until they are wanted by customers. Channel intermediaries also perform a number of facilitating functions, functions that make the purchase process easier f or customers and manufacturers. Intermediaries often provide customer services such as offering credit to buyers and accepting customer returns. Customer services are often times more important in B2B markets in which customers purchase large quantities of higher priced products. EXSISTING STRATEGY: Unilever uses a lot of distributors and retailers to supply its products in each market where the final customer might reasonably look f or it. While appointing a 50 distributor f or a particular area, management uses its own judgment to select such a person that has a potential to operate effectively. Unilever uses an intensive distribution strategy for lifebuoy soap while at the same brand but in shampoos category it introduces only extensive strategy. Unilever did not fight for the better shelf space for lifebuoy soap. Lifebuoy is targeting middle and low income consumers so shelf Space is not important our main focus is on intensive distribution and ideal price with some innovation. SUGGESTED DISTRIBUTION STRATEGY: We have suggested that Unilever f or lifebuoy should introduce a new kind of distribution strategy that will be a strategic fit between its productions to consumptions. Unilever should identify its larger, medium and small consumption areas and design the channel accordingly. According to my sense and survey lifebuoy must go for intensive distribution with wholesaler and retailers in the areas where rate of consumption is usually very greater than that of the other areas where comparatively rate of consumption is not so attractive. Lifebuoy is available at every outlet and at every big, medium and even at very small stores (hatti).Now we want to save the cost of per Tikki soap in Urban areas by reducing intensive approach and turning to a new strategy that a more easily applicable and sensible. We have discussed the following diagrammatic distribution method of Unilever for Lifebuoy in the both Rural and Urban Market as well. We have eliminated the existence of wholesaler from in the urban market as 51 of many reasons: It is a lower consumption area for Lifebuoy Warehousing cost can be a big trouble f or wholesalers as they did not purchase extra quantity from distributors and company and definitely it increases cost of contacting to wholesaler and managing relationship. While the selection of channel company considers customer buying patterns and the nature of the market.
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